Gods and Monsters - A Visit To Athens
While in Greece, a private airport transport service is the best way to get to your final destination. Here's what to enjoy if you visit Athens.
It would be almost impossible to think of Greece and not consider the subject of gods and monsters. The remnants of mythology are ingrained in the archipelago - from its tallest hills to the smallest hidden cove, and from the most palatial temples to the tiniest back street cafe.
When you land in Athens (which is named after the Greek goddess of wisdom), before even getting into your airport transfer service you’re certain to encounter images and reminders of the legends that abound here. The city is rife with mystery and every visitor can experience the sense of enchantment. Below are some ways in which to immerse in the ‘gods and monsters’ culture of Greece while you're in Athens.
The Acropolis dominates the Athenian skyline, along with its equally imposing temple, the Parthenon, and they have stood watch over the city for millennia. Built around 447 BC to 338 BC, this temple dedicated to Athena is the largest from its era. Also located in the Acropolis is the Erechtheion, another temple dedicated to Athena, as well as Erechtheus and Poseidon, which once served as a sanctuary. The Acropolis also provides the best views of the city and makes for some excellent photographic opportunities.
The Olympeion (The Temple of Olympian Zeus)
Located near the Athens Gate (you’ll probably catch a view as your airport transfer service takes you in to the city proper) stands the Olympeion. Even bigger than the Parthenon, this massive temple dedicated to Zeus took more than seven centuries to complete. When finally finished, it comprised 104 massive marble columns, each rising 17 metres into the sky - a fitting tribute to the king of the gods. Today, however, only 15 of those columns are still intact. Gone, too, are the statues of Zeus and Emperor Hadrian (who was responsible for completing the sanctuary) that once stood side by side within. After paying your respects here, you can head north to visit the ruins of Themistokles' Wall, also called ‘long walls’ of Ancient Greece. These structures both protected the city and provided a safe way to reach their seaports, even when the area was under siege.
The National Archaeological Museum of Athens
The National Archaeological Museum is hailed by many as one of the greatest museums in the world. It's the largest museum in Greece, showcasing more than 20,000 exhibits, with five major permanent exhibitions. This 8,000-metre space houses not only ancient sculptures, pottery, jewellery, artwork, and more, but also a massive library of archaeology and a photography archive – it's a researcher’s dream. It's here you'll find the Antikythera Device, a 2,000-year-old astronomical clock. The ancient Greeks used this to calculate astrological and astronomical events, and some say it was the first ever (analogue) computer. The museum is generally open until 7:30 p.m. (check their website or ask your airport transfer service driver for winter hours) so you can take your time and make a day of it.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Lukas Johannes is a driver for Shuttle Direct. If you’re looking for an airport transfer service, Shuttle Direct provide pre-booked shuttles to major destinations all over Europe. Wherever you travel, Shuttle Direct can make sure that you don’t miss your car on your holiday abroad.